The Sixth Blight
Qunari templar accompanying the wardens
Vashaan was born 57 years ago to a pair of saarebas — Qunari mages. His parents were Tal-Vashoth by the time he was born, so he never lived among the Qun. Instead, he spent his early years roaming the Rivaini countryside as his parents worked as mercenaries. His parents, who were proud to be Tal-Vashoth, used the term to name him. Vashaan became his name, a bastardized version of the word “Vashoth.”
Vashaan’s mother and father expected that they would produce a saarebas child like them. As he grew older, they anticipated he would eventually display the workings of magic — but that day never came. But still they traveled in a band of mercenaries, and so Vashaan picked up the skills of weaponry and combat. Though he was a Qunari much smaller than many (he’s about 6-foot-2), he proved himself at least slightly capable in his early years.
Eventually, he and his parents — who never produced another child — made their way to Orlais. When Vashaan was in his mid-20s, his band of mercenaries took a job without knowing all the details and protected a small village from armored attackers. In the morning, the troop discovered the attackers were actually Orlesian military and the village was a hotspot of rebels who had planned a coup. A few nights later, after the mercenaries had fled, the group was overtaken in the night by Orlesian troops. Most of the mercenaries were slaughtered, though Vashaan’s parents managed to escape. He watched them run as he was captured and caged. That was the last time he ever saw them.
Shipped to Val Royeaux, Vashaan was tried for his crimes. After hearing his side, though, his sentencer opted for mercy. Instead of death, he was placed as an indentured servant with a high-profile diplomat. The diplomat, a nobleman called Baron Cyril Maron, used Vashaan as a bodyguard for more than a decade. Over time, Vashaan’s attitude changed from hatred of Cyril to admiration. Despite his status as an indentured servant, Cyril treated Vashaan as an equal and provided him with all the luxuries of nobility. Twelve years into his servitude, Cyril freed Vashaan and chose to give him a minor noble title: Ser.
Months later, still in Val Royeaux, Vashaan was approached by the city’s Templar Order. Though he was a Qunari, Vashaan’s service for more than a decade to Cyril, who was an ally of the Templars, gained the group’s attention. They offered him a position as a Templar recruit. Vashaan over his lifetime had grown to distrust mages — with the mage expectations his parents had for him and their flight when he was captured. Thus, he agreed.
For another decade he remained in Val Royeaux, living among the Templars. Like many, he developed an intense addiction to lyrium. When he was in his early 40s, Alistair Theirin was named king of Ferelden. As Alistair was (almost) a Templar, the Templar order of Orlais opted to show Alistair support by sending a contingent of Templars as a sort of diplomatic party. Since Alistair had traveled with the Qunari Sten during the Fifth Blight, Vashaan was sent along with the contingent as a show of progress.
In Denerim, the Templars participated in a celebratory tournament in which Alistair promised a place in his royal court to the winner. Vashaan participated but did not expect to win; he was not as skilled as other combatants. However, the night before the final round of the tournament, the final combatants went out for a night of carousing — and Vashaan, with his Qunari frame, was the only one not be suffer a terrible hangover the next morning. Thus, from a matter of complete chance, Vashaan won the tournament and a place in Alistair’s court as a royal guard. The choosing of a Qunari for such a position was met with great turmoil, but Vashaan rapidly earned his keep through shows of loyalty. He’s been serving Alistair the kingdom of Ferelden ever since.
In personality, Vashaan’s first loyalty is loyalty itself. Those who treat him well earn his respect. He’s a stern man with little humor. He does not like to grow close to his equals; instead, he grows close with his superiors. He is honest — sometimes brutally so — and rarely loses focus on the task at hand. He believes in the power and necessity of the status quo. In combat, he would rather plan an assault than rush in. When drinking, he tends to lighten up.
He does not trust mages, but he also does not hate them. Rather, he believes many of them are dangerous and self-serving. He has met exceptions, but there are few in his mind. Due to his history serving as a diplomat and court guardian to the king, and his status as a well-respected Qunari among human nobility, Ser Vashaan is known by quite a lot of people (represented by the master level of the Contacts talent) and does not shy from asking them for favors when required. Note that Vashaan has an advanced age — he’s 57 — so he’s wise. However, he does not allow his age to get the better of him. Finally, he is still an active templar and he continues to struggle with an addiction to lyrium.
I expect he’d take his assignment as liaison to the Grey Wardens very seriously, though he’d be careful to make clear that he’s not there to make friends or to join the Grey Wardens (though that might happen anyway). He’ll report back to Alistair with the Wardens’ activities as often as he can. He will rarely call the shots unless the plan the group intends to do something that would endanger the kingdom of Ferelden or disrupt the status quo. With the Wardens, he views himself as more of an observer than an active force. That said, he will fight with them and stand up for them because his orders tell him to ensure the completion of their objectives.